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The bottom is an interesting place to find yourself. All of the sudden, the dust begins to settle and you look around, absorbing the state of your world. Everything is so clear when your life falls apart. You are given this amazing opportunity to rebuild and make incredible changes in yourself. Chaos is the perfect time for lasting change. I’ve finally reached a point where I can no longer go on living like this. I suppose it’s partly disgust, mixed with shame and confusion.

I thought I was doing everything right, or at least trying to. But here’s the thing, I now realize that no matter what I bring into my life, it’s all going to slip between my fingers if I don’t fix myself at the core.

I don’t need to recreate my external world. As I get older, I can see that I’ve gone that route too many times. It’s time to take a hard look at myself and figure out why life has never gotten better no matter where my home is. It’s not easy to do, and I know now that I can’t do it on my own.

I’m so fortunate to have the friends that I do, they’re my family. But it’s gotten to the point where I can see the pain in their eyes as they watch me self-destruct. My personal problems have now permeated everything and everyone around me. Co-dependency, self-medicating and escapism have been my downfall.

No matter how many times I’ve felt my heart ache in these past few months, I know I’ve arrived at this point for a reason. All of this pain that I am going through is necessary to become the person I want to be. Every last drop.

I’m not going to let this city turn me away. Because guess what? It’s not the city, it’s me. The only thing I am running from, is myself… and I’m too logical to keep planning an escape when I keep returning to the same place.

If I leave, it’s going to be on my terms and not based off of delusional fear. My personal faults cannot be masked as external factors any longer… it’s as if I’ve been chasing my own shadow.

I created this situation and I am the only one who can pick up the pieces. I feel like I’m finally taking the right path to become the person I know I’m capable of being. Big things are about to happen.

 

“Man looks into the abyss
There’s nothing staring back at him
At that moment, man finds his character
And that is what keeps him out of the abyss.”

– G.G. in Wall Street

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A while back I came across a system for tracking your repetative “to-do” items which can be used as a tool to develop consistent and productive habits. It touches upon the timeless philosophy stating that “what gets measured, gets done”, but the challenge is always in finding a system that meets your needs.

Initially, I discovered a software program at http://www.sciral.com/consistency/ which I used for a while. I will probably start using it again, however, it can become a mess if you don’t have a clear purpose before diving in.

I also go back and forth between hi-tech and low-tech, ultimately finding a balance somewhere inbetween. I’m always keeping my eye out for new ideas as well as developing a few of my own. From what I can tell, there is no such thing as a perfect system for most of our lives. Perhaps my life will fit into a box one day, however, until then, I will continue to search for new ways to keep organized amidst the chaos.

That leads me to the latest tool I came across which definitely fits into the low-tech category. It is called the habit list and can be found at: http://www.productivity501.com/habit-list/308/. I love the simplicity of it and am currently enrolled in the course (http://www.productivity501.com/courses/) that walks you through ways you can use it effectively.

habit list

I was somewhat discouraged when I couldn’t find a template to download and get started. I Googled the subject for a bit, but decided to put the idea on hold until I could develop my own form. In doing so, I’m getting to try out another tool that is great for document sharing at http://www.scribd.com. Please find the links below for PDF and Excel versions:

There are a few other sources that discuss the system developed by Mark Shead at Productivity501…

Then, if you’d like to check out some of the ways that the system can be incorporated into your life go to:

Now that I’ve got a form to work with, I’m looking forward to catching up on the course emails that have been stacking up in my Inbox over the last few days. Perhaps I’ll find a way to work it into my daily groove. Either way, I’m hoping these forms will help someone else get started without the delay I initially encountered.

In closing, here’s another great post that lists out a few habits that will make anyone’s life better: http://www.thechangeblog.com/2007/06/03/24-daily-habits/

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“Successful people are successful because they form the habits of doing those things that failures don’t like to do.”
– Albert Gray

“First we form habits, then they form us. Conquer your bad habits or they will conquer you.”
 – Rob Gilbert
 
 “New habits can be launched . . . on condition of there being new stimuli and new excitements.”
– William James

“Attitudes are nothing more than habits of thoughts, and habits can be acquired. An action repeated becomes an attitude realized.”
– Paul Myer
 
“If you create an act, you create a habit. If you create a habit, you create a character. If you create a character, you create a destiny.”
– Andre Maurois
 
“Happiness is a habit – cultivate it.”
– Elbert Hubbard